A Christmas Thought

Madonna and Child
Jacopo Bellini (Italy, Venice, active 1421-1470/1471)
Italy, 1450s

While I was waiting for a ride, I heard the song, “Mary did you Know?” on the radio. Now, that’s a very Christian song for this time of year, but a lot of the lines in it really resonated with something that’s been coming up for me in the last few days.

“Mary, did you know that when you kissed your little baby you kissed the face of God?” Well, to us, each baby, each person is God and Goddess, but I was thinking more about hope. Living in 3&4 dimensions as we do, only getting hints of the future and having to run on belief and hope, is hard. We had the line in the Yule ritual for the Star Goddess to say, “You can never know me, only know of me, only touch, not hold.” It’s true. We can only touch what’s beyond our physical selves, never quite getting a grip on it, only knowing that it’s there.

Of course, being limited by the physical, sometimes our hopes and wishes run away with us and then fear creeps in, fear of screwing things up by hoping too much, by chucking in the wrong energies at the wrong time.

If Mary were told that her child was to be the Messiah, how must she have felt? I know my first thought when those astrologers showed up with their goodie baskets would have been very like what happens in the Monty Python’s Life of Brian. “Here now, go on with ya, ye’re having me on!”

But then….sitting with your child while he sleeps, rocking the kid when colic hits or teething, fishing him out of mud puddles and taking away the breakables … wouldn’t she have done as the rest of us do? Hoped and feared all at once? Thought she was crazy one minute and then hoped the next? And maybe, wept a little, for that which she could never quite know? Or maybe even never quite dared to believe?
That song used to choke me up when I sang it. It still does, for the hope and pain of being incarnate and being limited, but the absolute incredible beauty of going on from there to belief and Hope (with a capital H) that makes life worth living.

We know, from countless repetitions through our lives, know without having to hope or to believe, that the Sun will return to us. Going from hope to Hope, is like finally realizing that indeed the Sun will return to the sky.

And then… the doubt creeps in and we become human again and go on with our lives, richer for having Touched the Face of God.

Page created and published 3/5/21 (C)M. Bartlett
Article (C)2007 M. Bartlett
Last updated 3/5/21